Lots Of Changes Within County Of Orange Leadership Ranks

There’s a lot of movement within County of Orange leadership ranks.

As OC Daily was first to report, on January 17 Supervisor Todd Spitzer’s chief of staff, Irvine Councilman Jeff Lalloway, resigned his position. Communications Director Melanie Eustice was quickly appointed to be Spitzer’s fifth chief of staff in as many years.

The 1st Supervisor District is experiencing personnel changes, as well. Chief of Staff Brian Probolsky is starting a new Admin 1 position in with Orange County Waste & Recycling, as a contracts manager. Notwithstanding the de rigeur huffing from certain quarters, it’s a position for which Probolsky is eminently qualified due to his business experience, understanding of county government and natural aptitude.

1st District Supervisor Andrew Do’s new chief of staff is Chris Wangsaporn, who was chief of staff to now-former Assemblywoman Ling Ling Chang. Wangsaporn also served as state Senator Tony Strickland’s chief of staff from 2008 to 2012. Tara Campbell, another Ling Ling alumn, is joining Do’s staff as communications director. Campbell was also elected to the Yorba Linda City Council in November, and is the youngest local elected official in Orange County.

OC Daily has learned that OC Community Resources Director Steve Franks, a veteran of County of Orange government for more than 30 years, is leaving to become the city manager of the small but wealthy city of Villa Park.

Franks move is the latest in a series of departures by capable senior county staff. Also this month, Health Care Agency Director Mark Refowitz announced he’ll be retiring at the end of March. Refowitz has previously served as director of county Mental Health Services and as director of CalOptima.

In late September of 2016, Chief Operating Officer Mark Denny – who was responsible for the day-to-day operations of all county agencies – left to become the deputy city manager of the small but wealthy coastal city of Dana Point. In December, the county’s communications director, Jean Pasco – who was a politics reporter for the OC Register and LA Times for 20 years before joining the county early in the millennium – announced her retirement.

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